Matthew 17:14-23 (Jesus Heals a Lunatic, Part 3, Return to Capernaum)

In spite of Matthew’s description of the boy’s affliction as an illness, how does he say in Mat 17:18 that Jesus cured him?  How does Mark describe the healing in Mar 9:25?  What is the importance of Jesus’ command to the unclean spirit to not enter again into the boy?  See Mat 12:43-45.  How does the deliverance provided by Jesus differ from that provided by other means?  Cf. Joh 8:36.  In what ways does the deliverance provided by other means often result in a different, or even a worse bondage?  See Mar 5:25-26 and think: in what ways are people today enslaved both physically and financially by the “deliverance” provided by the modern healthcare industry?  While physicians now, as then, are often able to provide a measure of temporary relief for various maladies that afflict people, why are they unable to provide complete deliverance as Jesus can?  See again “perverted” in Mat 17:17 and consider that the modern healthcare industry that is deeply rooted in materialistic naturalism denies the spiritual realm and provides a deliverance that is based on its view of man as a purely physical being; contrast Mat 10:1.  What should we learn from this about whom we should seek and where we should put our faith in order to find complete and lasting deliverance?

How does Mark describe how the demon came out of the boy, and what the boy’s condition was after the demon had come out?  See Mar 9:26.  What did Jesus do to complete the boy’s deliverance?  See Mar 9:27.  What does this teach us about the manner in which true, lasting, and complete deliverance comes to us from the Lord?  See Joh 12:24-25, Mat 16:24-25, Rom 6:3-7, Gal 2:20.

What did the disciples ask Jesus privately after He cast the demon out of the boy and delivered him from his affliction?  See Mat 17:19.  How was their question like many of our own that we would like to ask the Lord?  What does Matthew record was Jesus’ answer to their question?  See Mat 17:20.  What words that He had just previously spoken to the boy’s father does His answer emphasize?  See Mar 9:23.  What mountain that He had just descended from was He referring to that makes His statement all the more significant?  Observe that Mount Hermon is so large that it is visible from nearly all Israel.  What does Mark record was Jesus’ answer to the disciples’ question?  See Mar 9:28-29.  What does this teach us about the relationship between being prayer-less and having little faith?  What does it teach us about the importance and power of prayer?  Are we powerless because we are prayer-less?

Mat 17:22-23    Where had the disciples and Jesus just been, and what events had just recently taken place?  See Mat 16:13, 17:1-2,14.  Where does Mark say they went from there, and what does he say about the manner in which they went?  See Mar 9:30 and cf. “gathering together” in Mat 17:22, which means literally to twist together and is used of a band of soldiers gathering themselves together in formation; the word’s cognate noun is often used of a conspiracy, giving a nuance of the covert manner in which they were coming together.  Where did they eventually end up?  See Mar 9:33, Mat 17:24.  Why did Jesus not want anyone to know about their going through Galilee?  See Mat 17:22-23, Mar 9:31, Luk 9:44; cf. Joh 7:1.  Under what circumstances had He only recently warned of the same thing?  See Mat 16:15-16,20-21.  What does Matthew say was the disciples’ response to His words?  See Mat 17:23.  What does Mark and Luke say was their actual understanding of what He was telling them?  See Mar 9:32, Luk 9:44-45.

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